Carnegie Mellon University
Despite significant gains in the energy efficiency of seawater desalination processes, low salinity and high salinity aqueous separations remain far from their thermodynamic limit. This seminar will highlight the growing need for high salinity brine treatment from oil and gas, industrial, and inland water treatment sectors. Next, I will review the feasibility of low temperature thermal processes to meet these separation needs and identify critical gaps that hinder the development of membrane distillation for treating high salinity feed streams. Finally, I will review recent work on nanoscale materials for improved performance of membrane distillation membranes.